I was incredibly honored last month to win my third award for Transformation, a 24" x 50" oil painting I created in college when I was 21 years-old. It came in Third Place ($200) in the Oakton Foundation Spring 2019 Visual Arts Competition. I'd like to share the original sketch as well as some insight behind the painting.
Like many, depression runs in my family. As a teenager I was caught in a downward spiral of anxiety and depression, and after a life-threatening crisis at age 16, I was briefly hospitalized and started getting treatment.
A few years later on my first day of college I met Sarabeth, a born-again Christian, who invited me to the Christian Fellowship group on campus. I went on and off, but mostly did my own thing for the next few years. But I became good friends with her and had many other Christians reach out to me. Even though I had been raised in church, it took me a long time to believe that the Heavenly Father really loved me and that all my sins were forgiven through the work of His Son, Jesus. It was difficult for me to grasp that Jesus bore the punishment for my sins, wanted to wash me clean with His blood and make “all things new” in my life. It seemed too good to be true! But in 1984 I cried out to the Lord and received Jesus as my Lord and Savior. It’s the best thing that ever happened to me, and a journey that I look forward to continuing for all eternity!
(To learn more about God's gift of salvation, click here.)
This painting reflects the transformation that took place in me. He brought me out of a dark place into his marvelous love. Colossians 1: 13 AMPC, "[The Father] has delivered and drawn us to Himself out of the control and the dominion of darkness and has transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love."
A book I'm currently reading which addresses healing in our hearts and I highly recommend is, Unlocking the Heart of the Artist by Matt Tommey.
Recently completed, "Heart Flower Grid" mixed media, 12 x 12
This was submitted to a "Call for Entry" for
Maternity and OB spaces at AtlantiCare Medical Center in Egg Harbor Township, NJ
This top piece was purchased by AtlantiCare Foundation, Egg Harbor Township, NJ for their Maternity/OB Ward!
Recently completed, "Flower Fields #1 & #2" 12" x 24", acrylic
These were created for submission to a "Call for Entry" for
Maternity and OB spaces at AtlantiCare Medical Center, Egg Harbor Township, NJ
I recently attended an incredible guided tour of the Pennsylvania Capitol Building in Harrisburg, PA with the Eastern PA Branch of the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators. The capital is amazingly beautiful!
(Unfortunately, I forgot my camera, so these shots were taken with my flip phone.)
"Designed and manufactured by Henry Chapman Mercer (1856-1930) of Doylestown, the floor is interspersed with close to 400 mosaics illustrating the state's history, animals, industries, occupations, and modes of transportation."
"When Theodore Roosevelt attended the dedication of the building on October 4, 1906, he said,
'This is the handsomest building I ever saw.'"
We also got to meet and visit the studios of Jonathan Bean and Lauren Castillo, two incredibly talented, award-winning authors and illustrators at The Millworks. Here are a few of their book covers (below).
Evan and I had an awesome time at the St. Catherine's Patron of the Arts 19th Annual Photography, Art & Poetry Exhibition this past weekend! The multi-faceted and multi-dimensional show featured over 700 pieces of art of all kinds (and all ages), including oil and acrylic paintings, watercolors, pastels, mixed media, sculpture, as well as photography, poetry, live musical performances, and fantastic refreshments. It was one of the most enjoyable and best-quality shows I've ever had the pleasure to be a part of.
To make it more fun, the show offered 1st, 2nd, 3rd place and Judges Choice Awards in various categories. The prospectus said winners would be notified by email the Friday before the show. I was hoping to hear something, but the Friday came and went and I assumed the awards went to other people. Evan and I were both disappointed, but we went to the show excited and expecting to have a good time.
As we made our way among all the stunning artwork and poems, we discovered that I had won three awards! There wasn't enough time to notify the winners this year, and the surprise left me stunned and floating on a cloud! I won:
Judges Choice Award - Art, Transformation
First Place Art Award - Mixed Media, Aslan
Spirituality Award - Poetry, Your Love Heals Me
Thank you so much to all the judges!! I'm very grateful to Maude Carolan Psych, a fellow member of the North Jersey Christian Writers Group for telling me about the show.
Evan's a big part of my success-- his encouragement, support and feedback are invaluable!
Photos • Poems